Inishowen’s transplant patient makes plea for more donors

Clonmany man happy and healthy with kidney transplant for 26 years

PAGE 9  Hugo BoyceDONEGAL’S longest living kidney transplant patient has encouraged everyone to carry a lifesaving organ donor card.

Hugo Boyce from Clonmany has been happily living with his kidney transplant for a massive 26 years – making him the longest living kidney transplant patient in the county.

The average lifeline of a kidney transplant is between 14 and 15 years, however Hugo has defeated those odds – something which is very proud of.

However, he is not the longest transplant patient he has met.

“I was out golfing one day and I met a man from Australia and as it turned out his kidney transplant was going 38 years,” claimed Hugo. “That certainly gave me a lot of encouragement – I thought I was coming to the end of mine but this gives me new hope.”

Hugo, who is a member of the Irish Transplant Team Ireland, said their main aim is to encourage more and more people to become donors.

“Everyone should carry a donor card – I can’t stress that enough. This is our main aim – its why we do things like this. Becoming a donor is so important there is a lot of people out there to help and a lot of people in need of different organs,” added Hugo.

Next month the Clonmany man will travel to Krakow in Poland to represent Ireland in the 8th European Transplant and Dialysis Sports Championships.

Hugo, who will participate in bowling and petanque (French bowling) at the competition, is no stranger to the Games having previously won Gold medals at the World Championships.

“I’ve been to Canada, Thailand, Germany and Sweden in the past and I was fortunate enough to win gold in long bowling and petanque in 2005 and 2007.

“This year however, I’m going for the fun – I’m going out to enjoy myself. It’s a great experience and you get to meet people from all walks of life – I’m looking forward to it.”

Hugo has previously competed in the golf tournament at the Games as well, however as that is getting more strenuous, the Clonmany man prefers to play for fun at his local club in Ballyliffin, where he has served as President and Captain in the past.

Hugo, who is well known for his involvement in the famous Clonmany Festival, will join the 34 strong Transplant Team, which comprises 25 men and 9 women ranging in age from 16 to 76, who will represent Ireland in Poland from August 16 – 23.

The team includes five liver transplant patients, 22 kidney, one combined kidney/pancreas, one bone marrow and five people who are receiving dialysis treatment.